In support of the advancement of the nursing workforce in Appalachia, Sisters Health Foundation has awarded Washington State College of Ohio a $50,000 grant.

MARIETTA, OHIO—In support of the advancement of the nursing workforce in Appalachia, Sisters Health Foundation has awarded Washington State College of Ohio a $50,000 grant.

With the shortage of nurses at critical levels, especially in this region, WSCO is expanding its nursing programs to support more students than ever before. In addition to doubling its Associate Degree Nursing (ADN) program enrollment, the college, which was granted state approval in the spring to offer a bachelor’s of science in nursing (BSN), plans to roll out the advanced degree program in 2023.

“Our efforts are focused on serving the workforce needs of this community and currently the demand for skilled nurses in our community has surpassed the local supply,” explained WSCO President Dr. Vicky Wood. “The financial support from Sisters Health Foundation will help us supply the Mid-Ohio Valley with well-trained, highly-skilled nurses. We are grateful that Sister Molly, Renee, and Shei believe in WSCO’s mission and share our vision for strengthening this community.”

The funds provided by Sisters Health Foundation, which will be paid over two years, will be used to expand WSCO’s nursing faculty and success coach team for the additional ADN and new BSN cohorts.

Washington State’s nursing program, approved by the Ohio Board of Nursing, has a long history of excellence in nursing education. The program has consistently maintained above-average pass rates and was recently ranked first among all nursing programs in Ohio and second in the Midwest region.

The Associate Degree Nursing (RN) program at Washington State currently has a 100% pass rate for the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN). This is more than 17% higher than the national average and nearly 21% above the state average. Students will now be able to enroll in this nursing program twice a year—August (fall start) and January (spring start).

“Washington State College of Ohio operates a top-notch, growing nursing program,” said Renee Steffen, executive director of Sisters Health Foundation. “We’re pleased to provide grant funds for an additional success coach so that nursing students have support at every step of their educational experience.”

Washington State College of Ohio offers multiple pathways for individuals to begin or further their nursing career. For example, the Education Advancement to Registered Nurse (EARN) pathway is designed to enable adult students to work in the healthcare industry three days per week and attend college courses two days per week while working towards their associate degree in nursing. Admission is based on high school or college GPA, ACT or TEAS score, references, and completion of program prerequisites. All students in various pathways are able to connect with a nursing success coach to improve their opportunities for course and program completion.

For more information on the WSCO Nursing program, visit or contact Admissions at 740.568.1900.



Pictured are (from left to right)-- Shei Sanchez, Program Officer for Sisters Health Foundation; Sister Molly Bauer, Senior Program Officer for Sisters Health Foundation; Megan Hardway, WSCO's Director of Foundation and Development; and Renee Steffen, Executive Director of Sisters Health Foundation.